Buckle up trance fans, I’m either about to hit you right in the feels, or give you a really bad case of FOMO.

Jake West for Insomniac 9

Photo by Jake West

It’s been a couple weeks since Dreamstate LA went down at the NOS Events Center. Ever since Insomniac teased an all-trance event, it’s been the talk of the community. Even now, sets are being uploaded, more pictures are surfacing, and the buzz is still very real.

When I arrived at Dreamstate, the first thing I noticed was its size. I knew coming to the event that there would only be one indoor stage, which had me worried that the entire grounds would be extremely limited. However, Insomniac did an excellent job at providing enough space (and even speakers) for patrons to escape the crowded building and enjoy the show outside. As pleasant (relative to any other festival) as the outdoor experience was, the real treat came once you entered the venue itself. Situated inside an old hangar were top-tier trance acts, a single stage, and top-of-the-line production.

Jake West for Insomniac 5

Photo by Jake West

I was a bit confused when I first learned of the single stage, as multiple-staged festivals have definitely occurred at the NOS Center. However, looking back, the decision actually made sense. First off was the music. Chances are if you weren’t enjoying the music at one stage of an all-trance event, you wouldn’t enjoy the music at another stage. There was a tasteful mix of Psy, Tech, Uplifting, and Progressive Trance, allowing for an almost universal acceptance of sets. And fans seemed to have little to no qualms with the event, as even those in the back were dancing non-stop with their eyes closed, lost in the trance.

One of the standout sets to me was Jordan Suckley’s (provided above), as I was not as familiar with his music as some of the other performers. The Damaged Records head threw down an aggressive set and even threw in some scratching, something I never expected to hear at a trance show. However, as the nights progressed, I noticed that many sets had a similar feel. This was obviously to be expected at an all-trance festival, but after 10 hours of hearing it each night, it became hard to tell who was performing without constantly checking the lineup. This shouldn’t be taken entirely as a negative aspect of Dreamstate though, as my personal tastes were more than likely to blame; to the dedicated trance fan, the sets would have been pleasing through and through.

But seriously, the most memorable part about the entire weekend was the event production. Each aspect was on point: the lasers, lights, sound, everything.

Jake West for Insomniac 7

Photo by Jake West

Towards the back the sound was a bit bass-heavy, but things cleared up shortly after making my way into the crowd a little. Lights lined the ceiling throughout the venue, allowing everyone inside to experience what was going on. Columns of light shot down and lasers flew off the stage to the back wall in unison with the music in a glorious display of what Insomniac is truly capable of making come together.

With an over-saturation of the current trance market with big-room riddled nonsense and a serious lack of trance-related events in the US, Dreamstate was a seriously refreshing reminder that the real stuff is still out there; kudos to Insomniac for reviving a seemingly dead/dying genre. For those considering going to the San Francisco date, I urge you to buy the ticket, the experience is well-worth the money.

Tickets for the SF date can be bought HERE